The Pittsburgh Steelers lost their rookie defensive lineman to IR earlier this season. Here’s when we can expect him to return to the field.
It’s never good when a team loses one of their top-four draft choices to injured reserve. Unfortunately, this happened twice to the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2022. Wide receiver, Calvin Austin, suffered a foot injury early in training camp, and attempted to come back this year, but surgery would ultimately end his rookie season before it ever got started.
The good news is that the Steelers should be getting their third-round pick back soon. Though Austin won’t see the field for the first time until 2023, DeMarvin Leal is trying to make his comeback after landing on IR with a knee injury he suffered all the way back in Week 5 against the Buffalo Bills.
Leal has already met the four-week IR requirement, as the team has already played five straight games without him. Last week, the Steelers opened his 21-day practice window, which means he will need to be activated before it expires or he will not be eligible to play again this year.
Latest Injury Update for DeMarvin Leal
After returning to practice in Week 11, it seemed like there was a slight chance that DeMarvin Leal could suit up against the Bengals. Ultimately, the team decided that he wasn’t quite ready to return and chose not to activate him. However, this could be the week he officially gets lifted from IR and returns to the field.
With another week of practice in preparation for the Indianapolis Colts, Leal may be ready to go as early as this Sunday. It’s important to remember that Leal won’t show up on the Steelers injury report until the team officially lifts him from IR.
Based on the timetable for his return and the fact that the Steelers chose to open the practice window when they did, Leal should see the field by Week 13 against the Atlanta Falcons at the latest. However, the fact that he has been practicing is a great sign. Our guess is that he gets activated prior to the Steelers vs Colts game on Monday Night Football.